Get ready to heat up your core with step-by-step details on how to practice a better Chaturanga or Push-Up in no time! Feel like your up-down method to Chaturanga looks more like a wet spaghetti noodle thrown at a wall? You are not alone. Gain a better more core induced yoga practice in no time!
Many of us have a large stability ball at home and have no clue what to do with it. Enjoy just 10 minutes with me and your stability and I know you and your stability ball will develop a whole new relationship together. 10 minutes of core, this video will leave you quivering, feeling like you've done your body good in 10 minutes flat!
Side Body Series with Hope Zvara
1. From a kneeling position extend your right leg out to the side and turn your toes forward, anchoring into the outer side of the foot, keep the ankle in neutral and the thigh engaged.
2. With arms at “T” Inhale reach to the right and Exhale slide down the extended leg. Keeping the pelvic-core strong and engaged feel the side body open and extend.
3. Look upwards or down and find a position for the neck in rotation. Continue to breathe and work to reach from the bent knee to the extended arm.
4. Be playful yet mindful of moving the torso open or slightly closed and find where the pose best serves you.
5. Other arm variations: Tuck top arm behind the torso and work to rotate open, rotate the arm inward towards the ear and extend the arm alongside the head and ear. As you rotate the torso open rotate your arm towards the ear.
6. On your next exhale rotate the torso down towards the extended leg. Inhale work to lengthen and exhale work to release deeper. Keep your core strong and allow your hips to press back and you reach towards the leg.
7. Either hold on to the foot with the hand or extend your left arm or both arms beyond the foot to continue the length in the spine and back muscles. If needed prop up on blocks if your hands will not meet the floor. Remain her for ten breaths.
8. Inhale open back up and extend your left arm towards the sky.
9. Pause for two breaths.
10. On your next Inhale draw your body upright with the arms at a “T” position.
11. Exhale and top to the left, placing your left hand under your left shoulder, fingers point away and the fold of the elbow rotates in line with the middle finger.
12. Keep foot (on floor), bottom knee and hand in line with each other and rotate the extended leg to be parallel with the floor, inner foot parallel with the floor (no external rotation).
13. Inhale and lift the right leg up towards hip height. Keep the chest open and the body stacked. Check the lifted leg to make sure you are in line with the hip and the inner thigh is facing the floor.
14. Exhale and lower the leg towards the floor working on contracting the pelvic floor, Inhale and lift the leg back to hip height slowly and controlled, being aware not to let the body shift and move.
15. If you are feeling hip or glute pain, check the rotation of the leg/hip, hip flexor pain work to internally rotate the leg more, glute pain work to open the hip up more.
16. Continue with the lift and lower for 10 times.
17. After the 10th time keep lifted and with a strong torso and obliques pulse the top leg for a small 3” lift ten additional times.
18. Exhale lower the leg to the floor.
19. Inhale, take a moment and Exhale using your core, float back to an upright position.
20. Inhale, and balancing, bring the extended leg back to kneeling.
21. Repeat the opposite side.
22. Repeat the weaker or tighter side implementing 2:1 ratio.
The joys of having a baby is more than anyone can ever describe, and as a mom of two, myself, I have found that unless you consciously choose to incorporate your little yogi into your practice, we often then choose not to practice at all. And for others the choice is to practice (exercise) without that little ball of joy nearby or incorporated into that very important part of your life. Yoga is a huge part of my life and my family’s life, my son Harper (now four), and my daughter Meredith (now 2) were from day one my little yogi buddies and walking buddies, they did (and still do) everything I do. Because to me, my mindset was my kids were going to be a part of my life, a part of my practice and a part of my studio, I wanted them to know no different, just like some want their kids to learn a certain prayer or family tradition, I wanted my kids to learn to live a holistic-yogic lifestyle from early on.
Like many exercise to me is important, but a mindful practice where it is a part of your lifestyle is even more important. Here are some examples: We all go for a walk (my two dogs and two kids) and we talk about why fresh air is important and how Mother Earth loves that we enjoy her and that we don’t litter(we usually are on a quest to pick it all up) and why that isn’t a good choice. I have taught my kids how to breathe and how they can use their breath to help them in stressful situations. I have a yoga room and my children adore spending time there, we take turns using my reformer, weights, and yoga mat, we teach each other poses, bounce on the bosu and I explain how bouncing is healthy for the lymphatic system and stretching is good for your muscles and mind, and building strength will help you get big and strong like your Momma and Papa.
For some in today’s society the parents may be healthy but they keep that to themselves, for many, eating salad and lean chicken at dinner, but then feeding the rest of the family greasy foods. Or going out for a hike or tending the garden but leaving the kids inside watching T.V. At my house if I want to practice yoga (while my kids are awake) or go for a walk it’s either with them or nothing. And more important than me staying physically fit, is for them to see me take care of myself in all I do and incorporate them into it; so as they get older it’s no different than brushing their teeth, reading books and taking a bath. To them I want it is simply how things have always been, and these skills are skills that can and should be taught by the parents. Now sure they crawl all over me in plank and slide down my back in Downward Dog, and that at times gets to be a little much, but that won’t be forever and yoga to me is more than exercise it’s tapping into the inner self and connecting, isn’t it for you?
To continue to read this article by Hope Zvara visit MindBodyGreen.com
Do you want to live a MindBodyGreen-style pregnancy?
Here are six great tips to get you started:
1. Think and talk about your little life inside in a welcoming way. The bond between mother and baby starts from the moment of conception and the relationship between you and your little one has already begun formulation when the birth into the world happens. I teach prenatal yoga and have two of my own children, and I really believe that the mother’s relationship with her baby starts from the moment of conception. Your thoughts are their thoughts; your words are their words. So watch what you say because they are listening. Let that little life inside know they are loved daily, that you can’t wait to meet them, and that they will be loved. All pregnancies are different and some have to make the hard decision to give the baby up for adoption; regardless, that little life still disserves the right to feel welcomed and nurtured. Why should it be any different from what I tell my non-mommy-to-be yogis that “what you say is what becomes your reality”, and what you say becomes your baby’s reality.
To view the rest of this feature post by Hope Zvara visit MindBodyGreen.com